Tag Archives: Stanford

Pink ribbon products… and GMOs

From Raine Saunders, at Agriculture Society:

“Before the clock runs out on this month’s breast cancer and GMO awareness, I’d like to point out some facts that may not be obvious to some consumers.

No doubt you’ve seen the pink ribbons all over food labels in the grocery store or on fast food products like KFC.  These labels are easy to spot on packages, cups, cans, boxes, and other containers of many foods and beverages.

But there’s something else to notice too – a majority of these foods bearing the pink ribbon for cancer awareness are full of harmful, toxic ingredients. Don’t believe me? Just pick up one of these food products and have a look. Continue reading

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NY Times admits Stanford organic study was flawed and misleading

From Lisa Garber at Natural Society.com:

Image via Natural Society.com

“We broke the story of Stanford’s ridiculous organic food study the very night of its publication. Now, a month later, the media is catching on to the study’s flaws; New York Times Opinion columnist Mark Bittman apologized for hoping—in vain—that the study would have little impact on the media.

“That was dumb of me,” he says, “and I’m sorry.”

Narrow Definitions and Egregious Oversights

The study suggests that organic animal and plant products are no healthier than conventionally grown varieties. Bittman puts it beautifully: “By providing ‘useful’ and ‘counterintuitive’ information about organic food, [the study authors] played right into the hands of the news hungry while conveniently obscuring important features of organic agriculture.” Continue reading

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Where happy cows make healthy milk

From Nicholas Kristof, in the NY Times:

“…For Bob, a crucial step came when he switched to organic production eight years ago. A Stanford study has cast doubt on whether organic food is more nutritious, but it affirms that organic food does contain fewer pesticides and antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Bob’s big worry in switching to organic production was whether cows would stay healthy without routine use of antibiotics because pharmaceutical salesmen were always pushing them as essential. Indeed, about 80 percent of antibiotics in the United States go to farm animals — leading to the risk of more antibiotic-resistant microbes, which already cause infections that kill some 100,000 Americans annually.

Bob nervously began to experiment by withholding antibiotics. To his astonishment, the cows didn’t get infections; on the contrary, their health improved. He realized that by inserting antibiotics, he may have been introducing pathogens into the udder. As long as cows are kept clean and are given pasture rather than cooped up in filthy barns, there’s no need to shower them with antibiotics and other pharmaceuticals, he says. Continue reading

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More on that Stanford organic study

From Environmental Working Group:

Organic Produce Reduces Exposure to Pesticides, Research Confirms / Stanford Univ. Study Also Finds Organic Meat Has Fewer Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria

Washington, D.C. – Consumers can markedly reduce their intake of pesticide residues and their exposure to antibiotic-resistant bacteria by choosing organic produce and meat, according to researchers at Stanford University who reviewed a massive body of scientific studies on the much-debated issue.

The Stanford team analyzed more than 230 field studies and 17 human studies conducted in the United States and Europe to compare pesticide residues, antibiotic resistance and vitamin and nutrient levels in organic and conventionally produced foods. The study, published Monday (Sept. 3), is available online at the website of The Annals of Internal Medicine.

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How Stanford study sells organics short

From Tom Philpott, in Mother Jones:

“Is organic food little more than a trumped-up marketing scheme, another way for affluent consumers to waste money? A just-released paper by Stanford University researchers—and the reaction to it by the media—suggests as much. (Abstract here; I have a copy of the full study, but can’t upload it for copyright reasons.)

“Stanford Scientists Cast Doubt on Advantages of Organic Meat and Produce,”declared a New York Times headline. “Organic food hardly healthier, study suggests,” announced CBS News. “Is organic healthier? Study says not so much, but it’s key reason consumers buy,” the Washington Post grumbled. Continue reading

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